LAST UPDATED: 13 April 2017
Despite the best efforts of the egg industry to keep the public in the dark, the truth is out there: hens suffer terribly in battery cages. With Australian governments failing to act on this cruelty, more and more retailers are listening to the concerns of their customers and taking matters into their own hands. Major stores and local grocers alike are pledging to not buy in to factory farming cruelty — and taking cage eggs off their shelves.
Here are 6 7 supermarket chains — both at home and abroad — that have taken the first step towards a kinder world for hens:
Rising consumer concern about animal welfare led to Woolworths becoming the first Australian supermarket chain to announce a phase-out of cage eggs. In 2009, cage eggs made up 70% of all eggs sold at Woolworths. By 2013, this figure dropped to 50%. And Woolworths has pledged to completely phase out cage eggs from their shelves.
Australia's third largest supermarket chain has become the most recent retail heavyweight to commit to phase out cage eggs from all their Australian stores, responding to over 100,000 kind Aussies calling on them to make the change. Thanks to droves of Animals Australia supporters speaking out for hens, ALDI has heard once and for all that cruelty is bad for business.
So far, 45 IGA's around the country have announced they're ditching cage eggs — and the number is growing. One IGA owner went even further by removing all factory farmed eggs from her store, including 'cage' and 'barn laid'. The response from customers was immediate — and overjoyed!
I don't care what anybody advises me anymore. I can't morally justify supporting that industry.Warrandyte IGA owner, Julie Quinton
Australia's second largest independent grocery chain, Foodworks, has jumped on board this cage-free revolution with over two dozen stores to date committing to remove cage eggs from their shelves.
As the single largest employer in the United States — with 11,500 stores across the globe, and a yearly revenue of $480+ billion — Walmart is recognised as one of the world's most influential companies. And they've just pledged to go cage-free.
Walmart U.S. ... are committed to continuous improvement and aspire to achieve the globally-recognized Five Freedoms of animal welfare for farm animals.Walmart Policy Statement
The entire Retail Council of Canada (RCC) — which represents more than 45,000 storefronts across the country — have voluntarily committed to source cage-free eggs for every major grocer in Canada.
While in Europe, Denmark's largest grocery chain — Coop — has made a game-changing vow to stop selling eggs laid by hens who are cooped up in battery cages by 2020.
From our experience, we can see a general trend in the market: Danes want more animal welfare.Coop Managing Director, Jens Visholm
A cage-free future...
With companies declaring their intention to go cage-free almost every week, we are well on our way to freeing millions of hens from cages for good. What can you do? If you don't buy cage eggs, no one will sell them. So no matter where you shop, help end the demand for factory farms by refusing to buy cage eggs, understanding what egg labels really mean for chickens and by eating fewer eggs.